Saturday, August 2, 2008

o p p o r t u n i t i e s

Summer school is finally over and "summer" has finally begun (I put that in quotations because really I have two weeks before more upper level classes kick me in the butt). Although, I am definately happy to sleep to whenever my heart desires for the next two weeks!
To really round up the past two months of my summer in one word: inspiring.

1.) Career wise: After this spring semester, due to some of my grades, I started doubting if I could even make it into Pharmacy - they say Organic Chemistry I is the "make it or break it" class for anybody going into the Med. field. Ochem I just wasn't clicking- so I thought of an alternative : Optometry (less competitive). I job shadowed a family friend's son who is a Optometerist for a day. Overall, the experience was pretty awesome even though, it was super quiet and I barely sat in with him and his patients (real bad weather that day so a lot of his appts. cancelled). I cut a few lenses here and there, put together a few glasses, played with a few machines and learned a bit about insurance/filing. Everything seemed not too shabby, but the things he was telling me about getting out of school made me think. For one, he advised me to open a practice as soon as I get out school (on top of 100k student loans) because it would be beneficial to build up your integrity with clients/patients as soon as possible and working commercial right out of school was a trap (not allowing you to give your patients the full attention they need because corporates want you to do things THEIR way). It makes sense; good advice. What really caught me off guard was when he mentioned how a lot of colleagues who opened practices right after optometry school had to live with their parents for about another 3-4 years before all debts were cleared. Comparatively, my aunts who just came out of Pharmacy school, have signing bonuses, dont have to deal with any business aspect of opening a practice and they all got jobs as soon as they got out. And why the hell would I want to live with my parents ?! So, basically, I decided to stick to Pharmacy. I'm not going to go for something just because its less competitive but rather use it as a back up ha ha. But seriously, everything is hard to get into, I just have to work hard :] Success is knowing you worked hard to get to your goal.

2.) Organic Chemistry II: After a not-so successful semester of Organic I, I decided to just go for it and continue to Organic II. With many many hours of studying, I began to understand it. You can say what you want and call me what you want but you can get pretty creative with chemistry. You synthesize products to get what you want and you can predict these products by understanding the mechanism at where a certain reagent is attacking the compound. It's like cooking, a giant cook book :) I realized, I was studying for Organic I the wrong way. Honestly though, me finally comprehending Organic wasn't just because I studied more but, partly due to my professor. He motivated us EVERYDAY. I know, most people would get irritated and annoyed by someone motivating instead of teaching but, to me, I think someone who tries and motivates me everyday makes me want to work harder and makes me want to actually learn. He attaches letters he gets from prior students onto our lecture notes andhe tells us to continue working hard to reach our goals. For some reason, motivation really is the key to helping a lot of people stay focused and dedicated (so, try to motivate people as much as you can). Professors make a big difference in your learning experience, especially this summer for me :).

I shall end this post with something Dr. Miles said on the last lecture day: "never NEVER give up on your dreams." As cheesey as it sounds, it's a lot different when you're hearing it from someone who really means it.

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